Whether you went to a regular old public school, private school, or college prep school, starting college is a whole new experience. So here are some things that all freshmen should know as they being the best four years ever.
Give It Time:
If you are not in love with your school by week 2, don’t call home crying and transfer. It takes time to find your place at school. The first couple of weeks (or months, even) are almost guaranteed to be awkward because everyone is clinging desperately to every person they meet in hopes of having someone to go to meals with.
It will take some time for you to start to meet the people that you actually want to be friends with, and until this happens, college might not be as fun as you expected. Even if by the 2nd or 3rd month of school you aren’t loving it yet, you still gotta to stick it out. Going to college is a transition, and a big one at that. And transitions take time. If you flake out too soon, you might be missing out on what would eventually become a school you absolutely love.
By only occasionally attending class and then spending the rest of your time in your room, you’re not getting the most out of your college experience. And, chances are, you’re not making any friends. College is most likely the last chance you will have to do things like sing in a choir, play on a sports team, or be in a comedy group, so take advantage of this time! If you’re not into that kind of thing, join a discussion-based club, like an LGBTQ (lesbian-gay-bi-transgender-questioning) group, feminist alliance, or something along those lines. By being a member of a club or team you will likely make friends, you will have something to add more structure to your days, and you will gain good experience and resume builders. Just be careful that you don’t overload yourself by joining every club on campus.
Go to Class:
Just because professors don’t always take attendance, doesn’t mean you should skip class all the time. Regardless of whether they notice your absence or not, your grades will be impacted. Yes, partying is more fun than class and homework, but at the end of the day you are going to college for academic reasons, so don’t forget that. A lot of people get so carried away with their social lives that they fail their first semester. Don’t do that. It sucks to be that kid, and your parents are NOT going to be pleased, especially if you, like most of us, are paying out the ass to go to school. Additionally, if you do really poorly both semesters freshman year, you could easily get kicked out of school. So go to class. It’s really not that bad.
Don’t Get Sloppy:
The freedom afforded by college is awesome, and the partying scene is usually great. But be careful not to go too crazy. You do NOT want to be the kid that goes to the hospital the first weekend of college. Make sure you know your limits and your tolerance level before you sign up for that keg race because it’s not fun for other people to take care of you when you are stumbling drunk, and it’s also really embarrassing for you. We all have the occasional bad night, but don’t make that a habit.
The Freshmen 15 is Avoidable:
We’ve all heard of it and we’re all afraid of it, but don’t get too scared, because its not a guarantee. As long as you keep the knowledge of the freshman 15 in the back of your head all the time, it’s not that hard to prevent it. If you make relatively smart choices at the dining halls and be careful about snacking, you’ll be fine. And if you are the kind of person that has to try every different dish the dining hall serves, and if you can’t say no to excessive snacking, then just balance it out by adding in some exercise. College gyms are really accessible, and if you’re not into working out in the gym, college is also a great time to take up something new, like running, biking, or swimming. Not only will exercise help keep the pounds off, but it will also make you feel better.